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Photo contest to mark FIBA's 80th Anniversary

Picture a small group of basketball representatives from eight countries gathered around a table. The date is 18 June 1932 and after several hours of meeting, a document is produced and signed. FIBA, the International Basketball Federation is born.

Eighty years later and FIBA counts 213 member federations. Sixteen men and women's World Championships have been held since that fateful day and basketball has been played at 17 Olympics. But, more importantly the sport has grown rapidly and has become a truly global game played in every country of the world; indoors, outdoors, on street corners and on beaches, on one or two hoops.

To mark eight decades of developing and promoting the game, of bringing together people of all regions of the world by uniting them through the sport, FIBA has decided to mark its anniversary with a photo contest that celebrates basketball in all its diversity.

Open to everyone, participants can submit up to five photos each, which they upload via the specially created website The contest got underway on 12th March.

The idea is to create a living gallery of basketball images that reflects the beauty and the diversity of the sport, acknowledging the fact that it reaches far beyond games played in front of crowds of tens of thousands and TV audiences of millions.

An old photo of game winner Michael Jordan suspended in mid-air just as he is about to make history is of course welcome, but so is one of young women playing basketball with a makeshift hoop in a remote Himalayan village or one of peacekeeping troops playing basketball alongside local children in a conflict zone. Something as simple as a nice picture of a Monday night pick-up game between friends can and should be submitted.

The only rule is that the picture is basketball related and of course that the participant owns the rights to it. Professional sports photographers and photojournalists may take part but so may any amateur photographer or basketball fan who has a nice image to share will be able to do so.

For the duration of the competition during the countdown to 18 June, FIBA will select and highlight one photo daily. Participants can win prizes including limited edition Tissot watches, while all participants will go into a draw for a pair of tickets to the Olmypic Basketball finals.

FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann explains the thinking behind the competition: “We thought long and hard about what we could do to mark that important anniversary. Although international basketball has many amazing superstars and role models, we wanted our message to be that basketball is everywhere and that it goes beyond the professional game. Players like Pau Gasol and LeBron James are household names, but they are only a little part of what basketball is about and what kind of an impact our sport has on people all over the world.

“I think this competition is befitting of the founders of FIBA, as it celebrates basketball as a global game in all its diversity and is testimony of how far the sport has come since that day,” he concludes.